Lubeck airport ( or Hamburg Lubeck airport as Ryanair insist calling it ) reminds me of the early days of flying low cost airlines when airports would be nothing more than just a little tin shed.
Lubeck airport is literally in the middle of nowhere. As the plane lands you see nothing but miles of green pastures and cows.
You walk out of the airport and it’s pin drop silence- no sound of cars or sign of people.
However we are in Germany remember and even in this nondescript location there is a train station.
Within minutes a train arrives which whizzes me into the heart of the town in a matter of 8 minutes. ( 2 euros)
Lubeck is a charming town and proudly proclaims itself as the city of short walking distances.
Century old red brick buildings with dreamy spires squeezed on top, nicely stuck between some lovely shades of green: lush parks with canals create a dreamy, romantic ambience.
Top Tip: This city is perfect for a romantic weekend shortbreak. Don’t come here on your own (like I did)
Here are some of our top highlights and must see places of this charming medieval gem.
The Holsten Gate (Holstentor)
A good place to start any tour of Lubeck is The Holsten Gate : on the western periphery this is a very impressive entrance to Lubeck’s beautiful Alstadt .
The Holstentor is something of a national icon which you can find on national currency notes and a lasting reminder of Lubeck’s rich medieval history. It has a unique pair of round towers sitting on a large archway entrance plus a beautiful grassy lawn leading upto to its grand entrance.
Top tip: A short detour from the Holstentor is St Petri Church.
If you want a good view of the city, and its surroundings, then you ought to get up to the viewing tower of the St. Petri church. It is a sturdy brick tower with a bulit in lift so it is perfect for people suffering from vertigo (that’s me!) since there is no worrying about see through stairs or windy, open viewing platforms!
The old salt warehouses (now converted into a fashion department store), close to Holstentor is a must see and a great reminder of the town’s medieval trading history and its link with ‘white gold’ or salt which was necessary to preserve food in the extreme northernly climes. The salt came in on the ‘Salt road’, taking about 20 days or so with every little village and town charging a tax/toll on it as it passed through. From Lubeck it was shipped out all over the world.
In the center of the Old Town is the wonderful Market, and along one side the Town Hall (Rathaus). The Rathaus is one of the most magnificent in Germany, built in the 13th-15th centuries in dark glazed brick, with a later addition dating to 1570 at the front of the building. The market square is a good place to buy some things for a picnic, or to have a seat at a cafe and enjoy the views and the local action.
Top tip: When visiting the Rathaus, nip into Café Niederegger.
The café is famous all around Germany and world for its marzipan: a confectionary that it is known to be Oriental in origin, however most locals will tell proudly boast that it was invented in Lübeck, a result of a famine in which the town ran out of all foods except for almonds and sugar.
Lübeck and this sweet confectionary have gone hand in hand since the early 1800s, and the Niederegger shop opposite the steps of the Town Hall is one of the busiest areas in town. (Breite Str. 89, across from the Town Hall steps).
By the time you leave this place you will have seen more things made out of marzipan ( 400 types of marzipan) than you ever thought possible.
In the shop you can buy affordable and unusual presents for the folks back home, in the art noveau inspired cafe you can enjoy the famous nut cream cake plus discover the history of marzipan in the salon.
If you’ve enjoyed reading about some of our highlights of Lubeck, stay tuned for the second instalment where I shed light on some of Lubeck’s most distinguised citizens plus information about where to stay.